By CATHERINE THORBECKE, ABC News
(NEW YORK) — GameStop, the video game retailer that found itself at the center of an unprecedented stock market extravaganza, announced its chief financial officer will be stepping down next month.
The company said Jim Bell, the executive vice president and CFO, will be resigning from his roles on March 26.
GameStop said that it has begun searching for a new CFO “with the capabilities and qualifications to help accelerate GameStop’s transformation” in a statement announcing Bell’s resignation. If a permanent replacement is not found by Bell’s departure date, the company said it will appoint Diana Jajeh, the chief accounting officer, as interim CFO.
The Texas-based company did not cite a reason for Bell’s resignation, but expressed thanks in a statement for his leadership, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The CFO’s departure, however, comes after the company’s stock saw a meteoric rise — and ultimate fall — late last month in a saga that is already being turned into a Hollywood movie.
An army of individual investors loosely organized on a Reddit forum pushed shares of the retailer to new heights in a move that brought hedge funds shorting the stock to their knees.
As the stock soared, however, retail investing platforms including Robinhood abruptly placed temporary restrictions on GameStop stock transactions.
The saga culminated in a House hearing last week, where lawmakers summoned some of the key players in the drama, including the CEOs of Robinhood and Reddit as well as individual investor Keith Gill (also known as “RoaringKitty” online).
Despite capturing the attention of the nation, GameStop has taken some heat from critics for not further capitalizing on the massive gains created during the stock market frenzy. In January, GameStop went from trading at less than $20 a share to reaching an intraday peak of $483 a share within a matter of weeks.
On Wednesday morning, GameStop stock was trading at approximately $47 a share.
Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.